Why Virgin Mobile SA hasn’t “succeded” yet

When Virgin Mobile ZA launched in 2006 – I visited their site and really couldn’t figure out what’s going on there. Immediately a bad sign!

Me being me, I tried to help them…

Fri, Jun 23, 2006 at 11:59 PM
To: sortmeout@virginmobile.co.za


OK, I can see you are trying to make it simple….
BUT, I really can’t figure out what’s going on on page 2 (http://www.virginmobile.co.za/virgin-portal-customer/RefineYourPackage.do )?

I’ve got experience with contract details and all that jazz, but you guys have lost the track…

First you ask for a down payment value, then some minimum willing to spend monthly (you should really make this a dropdown of possible values, because I’m sure the logic behind triggers on discrete boundaries only anyway),
then there’s the confusing “Finance” block with a couple of choices (what is that now? Paying off the phone? Is it included in the R100pm quoted? Or is it over and above the R100 that has to be paid?)

Where’s the line between contract and prepaid? Or what’s your story? It isn’t clear. Try to make it more linear instead of putting blocks of information on one page that confuses the user (for the “create your package” section)

All I want to see is: How much is it going to cost me per X months, final value. No Commitment value AND some other payment value of which the relationship is unknown.
Keep it simple.

Also, you pay R100 commitment, but you fail to mention if you get that as a credit value? And what about the other payment in that Finance block?

It’s just not “there” for the user, i.e. not clear what the cost is…
All because of that “finance” block.

Also, does this commitment amount mean FOREVER? Or is it for some random period of time???

OK, hope you get it right….
(it’s usually easy to understand something that YOU designed; just remember to test it on users first….)



Virgin Money ZA‘s site is awesome in comparison to Virgin Mobile ZA.


They have changed their site a lot since then, but still, everyone I know does not understand how virgin mobile works! They are supposed to be “different” and “simpler”, but it’s just not coming out right.
Basically, they are confusing, and customers look and it and say “huh?” and then just walk away.

The site still suffers from too many input fields, options and dropdown boxes; and that’s suppose to be making cellular simpler?


  1. JBagley Said,

    September 29, 2009 @ 11:01 am

    I knew it! Summer as officially arrived. Davy blogging again? It can’t be…

    It was a draft from a long time ago I just released 😉

  2. James Said,

    October 27, 2009 @ 2:06 pm

    Totally agree! I’ve had this explained to me a couple of times. You know how?

    “Here, read the pamphlet”.

    The assistants tend not to be able to explain it either…

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